Two videos are making headlines just hours before the first debate between Mitt Romney and Pres. Obama.
A tape from the right is drawing fire from the left; the video shows candidate Obama speaking in 2007 to a group of black ministers at Hampton University in Virginia.
The other tape, from the left, is drawing fire from the right; it's a video of Paul Ryan delivering a speech at a dinner hosted by the magazine "The American Spectator."
Reporter's Note: I suspect President Obama often dreads what Joe Biden will do next. Of course, he may also dread my daily letters, but like Biden…I am not deterred.
Dear Mr. President,
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, you can always count on Joe Biden to liven up any party! Here you are cramming for the big debate tomorrow, you send him off to do a little benign campaigning in North Carolina, and he let’s fly with a line about how the middle class has been “buried the last four years.”
If you listen to Biden’s comment in context, it’s not as bad as it sounds, but Republicans are howling. As they see it, the Veep validated all their claims about how your policies have failed. Their logic: You say you’ve made it better for the middle class; the Vice Pres says they’re still buried; ergo, you’re wrong…the middle class has not been helped by your presidency.
Your GOP pals are making a lot of assumptions, of course, not the least of which is that Biden meant what he said. Heaven knows we’ve seen plenty of instances in which he’s blurted out things that required some later clarification. I have no doubt that if he could say it again (or if your team could script it for him!) the VP would say something like, “The economy was so bad when we took office, that it has been an enormous struggle to make things better. We’ve succeeded. We’ve turned around the job decline, and we have the economy pointed in the right direction, but we also know that many people in the middle class have been struggling for the past four years. Hang on. Help is on the way.” Something like that.
Still, he said what he said, and you’ll have to live with it. That’s probably fair enough in a sort of cosmic sense. The meaning of Mitt Romney’s 47 percent remark has been somewhat unfairly massaged by your team, so you can’t be surprised if they make hay out of this ill-chosen comment from Biden.
The good part for your side: I’m not sure voters will care much. They know that the gentleman from Delaware lets fly with such statements from time to time, and that they probably ought not be taken too seriously.
I’m about to wrap things up for the day and head home. Sorry we didn’t get together for the game last night. Mind you, it wasn’t much of a contest, Romo practically gift wrapped the ball for the Bears with all those interceptions. Hey, maybe you can get Romney to do that with the debate. Ha! Call if you can.
CNN's Arwa Damon describes the scene inside the consulate in Benghazi, Libya after the deadly Sept. 11 attack.
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